Friday, September 09, 2005

Traits of a Mature, Self-Actualizing Person

Self-actualization: being knowledgeable, emotionally aware, self-directed, and at peace with the world. Who wouldn't want that? A nice list of the traits from Psychological Self-Help.
They see reality, and knowing "the facts are friendly," they accept reality more than most people. They see through phoniness, deception, and "games"--and avoid them. They cope with problems, rather than avoid them.

They accept themselves and others; thus, they can honestly self-disclose and forgive others' shortcomings.

They are spontaneous with their ideas, feelings, and actions, being genuine and confident.

They focus on solving problems but their "problems" tend to be outside themselves. For instance, they often have a "mission" that may be difficult to accomplish but gives excitement, challenge, and purpose to their lives.

They enjoy privacy, withdrawing sometimes to be free to have their own thoughts. Occasionally, they may have mystical experiences in which they become part of all mankind or of nature.

They resist culturally prescribed roles, e.g. masculine or feminine. They resent unfairness caused by social roles and prejudice. They insist on thinking for themselves and completing their mission, even in the face of social criticism.

They enjoy and appreciate the commonplace, the little things in life--a rose, a baby, an idea, a considerate comment, a meal, a loving touch, etc.

They feel a kinship, a closeness, a warmth, a concern for every human being.

They are close to a few people, although not always popular. They can live intimately and love.

They do not judge others on the basis of stereotypes, like sex, age, race, or religion, but rather as individuals.

They have a strong self-generated code of ethics--a sense of right and wrong. Their values may not be conventional but they do guide their lives.

They are creative and do things differently, not in rebellion but for the joy of being original and talented. They are clever, even in their ability to be amused instead of angered by human foibles.
As often as I can, I choose to make these choices. When I don't--well, I'm just human.

Never be bullied into silence. Never allow yourself to be made a victim. Accept no one's definition of your life; define yourself. - Harvey Fierstein

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